Grant & Loan Awards: Ben Hill County
Equity funds to assist with the purchase of machinery and equipment on behalf of Agri-Products, Inc./Suncoast Beddingâ€™s (API) location to the Fitzgerald Industrial Park in Ben Hill County. API manufactures superior animal bedding using pure pine. The timber is harvested, chipped into shavings, dried and compressed into bales for shipping. The company serves US clients and exports to Korea, China, Dubai, Mexico and Canada. API has expanded into Fitzgerald for availability to the Georgia ports and the regional availability of pulp timber. The company expects to purchase $5 million of timber annually from within a 50 mile radius. API commits to a private investment of $5,414,000.
EDGE funds to assist with building improvements and equipment. The Authority has applied on behalf of Frontier RV Georgia, LLC, a recreational vehicle and trailer manufacturing operation. The Company is headquartered in Longview, Texas. The Company plans to locate a manufacturing facility in an existing 142,000 SF building on 60.17 acres on Glen Bass Road in Fitzgerald. The EDGE funds will be used to assist with building improvements and equipment. This project will create 125 new jobs. Private investment is projected to be $1.5 million. This project is in competition with Virginia.
EDGE funds to assist with construction of 22,500 SF of additional space in support of the expansion of American Blanching Company (ABC), an existing peanut processor in Fitzgerald. The company is interested in expanding its facility and adding machinery and equipment as a result of a partnership with Unilever Bestfoods to establish new product lines that will increase its market share. Fitzgerald is in competition with Arkansas and Canada. This project will create 100 new jobs above the existing 161 existing jobs.
EDGE funds to purchase equipment needed for the location of U.S. Paper Converters (USPC), a manufacturer of converted paper and paper products, to Ben Hill County. Fitzgerald Paper Converting, LLC, was created specifically for this project. The Fitzgerald facility will serve the southeastern market and represent the second manufacturing facility for this 25 year old company. The other facility is located in Appleton, Wisconsin. This project will create 40 new jobs within two years with private investment of $2.8 million. Fitzgerald, Ben Hill County is in competition with South Carolina.
EDGE funds to purchase the Old Irwin Manufacturing Building in Ben Hill County for the expansion of the current Coachman facility. This expansion will create 175 new jobs in the next 3 years while retaining the current 168 jobs in the original facility. The Fitzgerald facility is in competition with the facility in Middlebury, Indiana for this expansion.
Equity funds to develop the South Georgia Regional Technology Park as a location for high-tech businesses. Potential employee training will be provided by the adjacent East Central Technical College.